With the U.S. still in a major recession and a big part of the population unemployed, a food budget might just help keep your family full and healthy.
One in seven Americans receives food (SNAP) benefits in order to feed their families. But buying the right foods can make meals that last longer and go further.
Opting for those fast food $1 hamburgers might be cheap and tempting, but in the end, the nutritional value required for good health is lacking in these foods.
Regardless if you’re using food stamps, or counting pennies, what you feed yourself and your family can mean the difference in having more left at the end of the month.
Here is a list of foods that you can usually feed your family through the month that are inexpensive but full of nutrients.
Brown Rice -is known as one of the worlds “healthiest” foods. First, it is a whole grain packed with complex carbohydrates and fiber designed to fill you up, not out. It is a source of many important and necessary nutrients. Make sure you buy brown rice and not white – white rice loses nutrients in its processing. Brown rice can be purchased in bulk at many stores, bringing the price down to pennies per serving.
Beans – any kind of bean or legume is also considered one of the worlds healthiest foods. Not only are they packed with complex carbohydrates, they are full of fiber and essential nutrients. Beans are versatile and many vegetarians use beans as their main source of protein.
Vegetables: No one can argue vegetables such as carrots, kale, spinach, romaine lettuce, broccoli and cauliflower aren’t inexpensive. They are some of the best foods because they offer so much in the way of nutrients, fiber, antioxidants, cancer protection and versatility. You can make hundreds of different dishes with any of these veggies.
Potatoes: these root vegetables are also packed with nutrients, complex carbohydrates and fiber, which keep bellies full. A ten-pound bag of potatoes cost only a few dollars, and they are easy to cook and offer an abundance of different dishes such as mashed, baked, roasted and in soups and stews they are delicious.
It is always best to try to get the most nutritional foods for the money, and buying in bulk as well as looking for fresh foods that are in season and on sale, can keep your family healthy and well fed.
Image via Wikimedia Commons